There has been information teased to the public about Qualcomm’s newest Snapdragon 820 computer processor. Some of the information revealed has indicated there is an updated graphics processing unit and an image processing unit, which could significantly improve the quality of future smartphone cameras. The Snapdragon 820 is the next high end mobile chip that will appear in smartphones, virtual reality headsets and tablets during the first half of the year 2016.
Qualcomm has a lot of money and hope riding on the future success of the Snapdragon 820. The company’s current processor, the Snapdragon 810, was already dropped by one of its biggest customers. Qualcomm has not released the name of that customer to the public, but rumors suggest it was likely Samsung because they are using an in-house processor in their new Galaxy S6 smartphone instead of a Qualcomm processor. If this partnership between Qualcomm and Samsung has really ended, then Qualcomm will either need to attract Samsung back to using their processor or they will have to find a totally new company to use their processor. It will all depend on the success of Snapdragon 820. If the processor fails to get picked up by any of the major mobile technology companies, Qualcomm could be in very big trouble.
Qualcomm first introduced the Snapdragon 820 earlier this year at the Mobile World Congress. They talked about their plans for a new 64-bit CPU core that will be called Kyro. Then more recently in Los Angeles at a Siggraph graphics conference, Qualcomm mentioned its visual computing components will be integrated next to its CPU. The GPU will be called Adreno 530, which contains new graphics architecture never used before with previously CPUs. The company says it will give up to a 40% greater performance boost than the previous Adreno 430. It will also use 40% less power as well, which is great news for those who love energy efficiency in their mobile processors.
Even though the Snapdragon 810 did not make it to the Samsung Galaxy S6 smartphone, it was still used in many other devices. Some of these devices include HTC One M9, LG Flex 2, Sony Xperia Z4 tablet and the Xiaomi MiNote Pro. Chances are that the newest versions of these devices will include the latest Snapdragon 820 processor. Since this gives Qualcomm a variety of different mobile manufacturers to work with, it increases their chances of staying strong and surviving the very competitive CPU market.